Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For December 16, 2012

Percentage of cat owners who go the extra mile this time of year to buy their cat the perfect present to put under the tree, according to a survey conducted by Temptations treats for cats: 46

Percentage of women who are more likely than men to consider their cat when buying gifts during the holidays: 49

Source: Temptations.

Percentage of women who wish they could stop exchanging gifts with certain people: 42

Percentage who have started exchanging handmade gifts to cut down on costs, with baked goods being the most popular homemade present: 52

Number of people that the majority of respondents say they buy gifts for: 10

Source: Women & Co.

Percentage of parents who say their kids found their gifts ahead of Christmas, according to a Wal-Mart survey: 14

Rank of the closet on the list of the best hiding places for gifts: 1

Rank of nagging on the list of the most persuasive techniques that parents say their child uses to get the toy he/she wants for Christmas: 1

Source: Wal-Mart Media Relations.

If one were to assume that Santa works in the realm of standard time, estimated length of time he would be able to spend per home, according to NORAD: 2 to 3 ten-thousandths of a second

Estimated age of Santa Claus: 16,000 years

Length of time his Christmas Eve trip may seem to us to take, but to Santa it may last days, weeks or even months in standard time because he functions within a different time-space continuum than the rest of us do: 24 hours

Source: NORAD.

Percentage of respondents who state that they will not book a hotel that does not have any reviews on the site, according to a survey conducted on behalf of TripAdvisor: 53

Percentage of travelers who state that they write reviews because they want to share a good experience with other travelers: 74

Source: TripAdvisor.

Ranks of "security threats" and "decreased productivity for employees" on the list of the biggest reasons companies block access to social media websites, according to a survey of human resource professionals by MySammy in conjunction with Holos Research: 1, 2

Percentage of respondents who expressed concern that employees are using social media to harm their reputation: 76

Source: MySammy LLC.

Ranks of booking early (47 percent), traveling on off-peak days (43 percent) and staying with family instead of in a hotel (39 percent) on the list of the top ways respondents are saving on travel this holiday season, according to Orbitz: 1, 2, 3

On average, amount of money respondents plan to spend on their holiday travels: $2,446

Source: Orbitz.

Percentage of those who have already given to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts who say it will not impact their year-end charitable giving, according to the annual survey by Red Cross: 78

Percentage of those who gave to political causes who say it will not reduce their giving to nonprofits this holiday season: 90

Source: American Red Cross.

Percentage of all robberies in 2012 in San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles that are related to Internet-enabled handheld devices (including tablets), according to research by ProCon.org: 50, 40 and 25 percent, respectively

Pounds of carbon dioxide that result from manufacturing one tablet, which requires the extraction of 33 pounds of minerals, 79 gallons of water and 100 kilowatt hours of fossil fuels: 66

Source: ProCon.org.

Percentage of consumers who plan to purchase, or have already purchased, cause-related gifts, according to the 2012 Cone Communications Holiday Trend Tracker: 16

Percentage of consumers who expect companies to support causes during the holidays: 71

Percentage of consumers who say they feel better about companies that support holiday causes: 75

Source: Cone.

Idle Thought

"The most beautiful people I've known are those who have known trials, have known struggles, have known loss and have found their way out of the depths." -- Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre(at)bwr.eastlink.ca.)